I think the Army did the wrong thing, doing away with them. We should have ADDED the BDU, not replaced the fatigue uniform. That way, when we needed battle dress, we could wear it, when we needed a fatigue uniform, we could wear that one!
I just had this discussion at work yesterday when talking about the new Army Combat Uniform. I even went to far as to say that if soldiers have an office job, they should wear *gasp* non-utility uniforms to work! Needless to say this was a highly unpopular position.
As for looking like a mall-ninja just because you're wearing a piece or two of 5.11 gear or some BDU pants...that's just silly. As long as you don't go overboard and look like one of their catalog models you should be fine. Besides, a mall ninja would never be caught dead wearng anything but the latest and greatest in high-speed low-drag TACTICAL gear, especially when it would make him stand out like a sore thumb.